The onslaught of new handhelds never ends. The Trimui Model S is doing the rounds on the Chinese forums, and it seems to be from a manufacturer we’ve not seen before.
Trying to pin down the maker of this handheld has been unfruitful so far. PowKiddy would have you believe it’s a device by them, but they’re just a reseller. In this case, it doesn’t seem as though they’ve even put their brand on it.
Looking around the web there are often references to a company called MacroKinetic associated with wholesale purchases of the Trimui. Looking at the MacroKinetic website though, they’re an automation, signage and lighting firm. It seems unlikely that they’ve got anything to do with its manufacture.
There is a Trimui website. It’s very much half finished, with mostly broken menus and image links pointing to localhost. A lookup of the domain shows it was registered in Guangdong in around 2012.
One thing I did learn from their very broken website is the pronunciation. In some of their branding, the Trim-UI name is split with a hyphen. So with the emphasis on UI, it stands to reason that some care has been taken in this area. I was able to find a few screengrabs of the UI, and whilst it looks a little dated it’s certainly better than the majority of proprietary interfaces. Whether TRIM-UI have also designed the hardware I don’t know.
WHAT IS THE TRIMUI MODEL S?
At first I assumed this would be a DIY handheld kit. There’s something about the varied colour combinations and overall assembly that looks like you should be putting it together yourself. But aside from a few exploded views, there’s nothing in any listings I can find that hints at it being a kit.
The Trimui is a small plastic and aluminium handheld that comes pre-loaded with a few ports and some emulators too. The listings describe it coming pre-loaded with OpenTyrian, Cave Story and the top down shooter C-Dogs. Supported emulators include the following:
- Mega Drive
- Game Boy
- Super Nintendo
- Game Gear
- Master System
- PC Engine
- PlayStation 1
- Game Boy Advance
- Game Boy Color
- Neo Geo
Given the emulators list, it shouldn’t be a surprise to learn that the device isn’t a powerhouse by any means.
TRIMUI MODEL S SPECS
- CPU: AllWinner F1C200S @
- RAM: 64MB
- LCD: 2″ 320×240 IPS
- Battery: 600mAh / 3.5 hours play time
- Ports: 1x USB-C (for charging, external controllers, headphones, mass storage)
- Storage: Either 4/8GB depending on model
- Additional storage: Up to 32GB MicroSD (listing comes with 16GB)
- Weight: 80 grams
- Dimensions: 106 x 56 x 10mm
Yes, that’s right – the screen is 2 inches. That’s about the same size as the LCD in the GB Micro, albeit with a higher resolution. When you consider that, and then look at the dimensions you soon realise that the Trimui is quite tiny. Not as tiny as these, but pretty tiny never the less.
There’s no analog stick on this thing, but we do get a full complement of ABXY buttons, a D-pad and L/R shoulder buttons. There are also Start and Select buttons, and a dedicated Menu button underneath the LCD.
As far as the OS goes, information is lacking. I have contacted the Trimui team through their site, if they get back to me I’ll be sure to update.
TRIMUI MODEL S COLOURS
Whilst the official PowKiddy AliExpress store currently only shows the transparent/black Trimui, there is another store with the full range of colours.
The PCB comes in Black, Blue or Green and the aluminium back plates come in five colours including an additional Silver and Red.
And that’s all we really know. If anyone has any info on the provenance of Trimui I’d be really interested. Whilst underpowered compared to a lot of current handhelds, it’s obvious that some thought has gone into the design of both the hardware and the UI.
TRIMUI MODEL S AVAILABILITY
The PowKiddy store on AliExpress is selling it for $50, and there’s another AliExpress store without the Trimui name in the listing selling it for $40. I did also find this website selling it, but I have no idea who they are or if they’re trustworthy.
The Trimui handheld is available for between $40-$50 shipped, I think that’s a little expensive for what it is. Some wholesale sites have it listed for as low as $20 if you buy enough of them, so I expect the price might drop if more retailers stock it.